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Research Coins: Affiliated Auction

Sale: Nomos 1, Lot: 179. Estimate CHF4500. 
Closing Date: Tuesday, 5 May 2009. 
Sold For CHF13000. This amount does not include the buyer’s fee.

BURGUNDIANS. Gundobald. 473-516. Solidus (Gold, 4.48 g 6), Lugdunum, 495-516. D N ANASTASIVS P P AVG Facing bust of emperor wearing helmet and cuirass, holding spear in his right hand and with shield adorned with horseman over his left shoulder Rev. VICTORIA AVGGGA / CONOB Victory holding jeweled cross to left; to right, star of seven rays. Belfort 5038. Lacam, Byzance pl. CV (this coin). Very rare. Wonderfully well preserved, a superb piece. Good extremely fine.

From the collection of a Gentleman, purchased privately from Tradart SA, and from the collection of G. Lacam, Dürr/Michel, 8 November 1999, 337.

The Burgundians, a Germanic tribe originally from Scandinavia, ended up ruling the area of Lyon and elsewhere in eastern Gaul, including Geneva and parts of Savoy, until their kingdom was destroyed by the Franks in 534. From the later 450s until his death in 472 one of the chief powers in the West was the patrician Ricimer, He created emperors as he wished and whenever they proved too powerful, deposed them. He was the brother-in-law of the Burgundian king Gundioc. His nephew Gundobald served Ricimer well - he even personally executed the emperor Anthemius on his behalf - but when his father Gundioc died he returned to Burgundy, which had been divided between him and his three brothers; by 500 he had managed to destroy them and was sole ruler. He began striking anonymous copies of the coinage of Anastasius c. 495, but after eliminating the last of his brothers his coins bore his monogram as well. The anonymous issues can be safely assigned to the Burgundians by their characteristic style and by find spots - the present piece is a particularly nice one.